Diaper Rash – Causes & Best Treatments November 2022

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Diaper rash is a broad term that refers to any skin irritation that appears in and around the diapered area. It’s mostly associated with infants. Diaper rash affects adults as well.

Diaper rashes, which are a patch of inflamed, reddish-colored skin that appears on the buttocks or genital area as rashes grow in moist places, are very common in babies.

It can happen to anyone who uses a diaper, but it is most commonly associated with babies.

Diaper rash or nappies rash Insensitive skin, frequently changed wet diapers, stool irritation, new food products, and too tight diapers are all linked to dermatitis.

How Does It Look Like?

Diaper rash resembles a skin sore, with a red texture, tenderness, and scaliness.

The symptoms differ slightly depending on the type of rash.

It appears as pink or red patches at times, and a yellow crust, sores, bumps, and pimple-like formations at other times, depending on the child.

Types of Diaper Rash

Diaper rashes can generally be classified into four types.

1. Candida dermatitis/Yeast infection

This is a fairly traceable type of diaper rash.

These rashes are caused by an overgrowth of fungus or yeast, which thrives in moist, warm environments, such as diapers.

Though the presence of yeast is a natural part of the microbes that live on our skin, the overgrowth is caused by a microbe imbalance.

Bright red and pink patches with sharp edges, bumps, and pimple-like appearances are common signs of yeast infection.

The sores may bleed in severe cases. The severity of a baby yeast diaper rash is usually greater than that of an irritant diaper rash.

Candida dermatitis or a baby yeast infection can be caused by tight diapers during diarrhoea, ammonia in the urine, and acid in the stools.

Even after taking antibiotics or trying new soap products, a yeast rash can develop.

When mothers are on medication, they can also pass on yeast infections to their babies.

2. Irritant Diaper Rash/Dermatitis

It is the most common type of dermatitis, and it is caused by prolonged skin contact with faeces and urine.

Irritant diaper rash is characterised by red or pink patches and skin swelling in the diapered area.

This type of rash is caused by a wet diaper.

3. Bacterial Dermatitis

Bacterial dermatitis is almost always brought on by a bacterial infection. It’s also known as impetigo.

Bacteria such as Staph (Staphylococcus) and Strep (Streptococcus) cause bacterial dermatitis or bacterial rash to develop.

Blisters filled with pus that rupture and form yellow (honey-colored) crusting or scab are signs of Staph rashes.

Bright red rashes around the anus are a sign of strep rashes. Rashes caused by streptococcal bacteria can also be found in older children.

It causes discomfort when removing stools.

There are a few rare conditions that can cause diaper rash in addition to these four broad categories.

Rashes may appear in the diaper area if you have seborrheic dermatitis, which is caused by an excess of oil in the skin due to a zinc deficiency.

4. Allergic Dermatitis

Allergic dermatitis is a condition that affects babies with sensitive skin who have an allergic reaction to wipes, creams, or any diaper ingredients, such as elastics, dyes, fragrances, or preservatives.

This can also happen if you switch diaper brands. Allergy, on the other hand, is not something that can be generalised, and each case should be investigated individually.

This type of dermatitis is more difficult to detect, but it is usually indicated by redness.

Causes of Diaper Rash

Diaper Rash is caused by a wet diaper or a tight diaper, which can lead to a variety of issues.

The enzymes in the baby’s poop cause the majority of the rashes. Yeast infection is another common cause of diaper rash.

The following are the most common causes of diaper rash that you should be aware of:

  1. Irritation From Urine & Stool
  2. Chafing or Rubbing
  3. Irritation Due To A New Product
  4. Bacterial or Yeast (Fungal) Infection
  5. Introduction of New Foods
  6. Sensitive Skin
  7. Use of Antibiotics

1. Irritation From Urine & Stool

The skin of a baby is extremely delicate. It can cause irritation if it is exposed to stool and urine for an extended period of time.

Diaper rash can also worsen if the baby has frequent bowel movements or is suffering from diarrhoea.

Because stool is more irritating and dangerous than urine, this is the case.

2. Chafing or Rubbing

Another common cause of newborn diaper rash is chafing and rubbing. It is one of the most common causes of rashes in and around the diaper area.

Tight-fitting diapers that rub against the baby’s sensitive skin cause friction, which causes sores and patches, which can lead to rashes.

3. Sensitive Skin

Babies’ skin is extremely sensitive. However, some babies have more sensitive skin conditions, such as atopic dermatitis or eczema, and are more likely than others to develop diaper rash quickly.

4. Bacterial or Yeast (Fungal) Infection

Diaper rash is frequently caused by a yeast infection. Bacteria thrive in warm, moist environments.

The diaper provides an ideal environment for it to thrive, and areas such as the buttocks, thighs, and genitals are vulnerable to this type of rash.

5. Irritation Due To A New Product

Diaper rashes can also occur as a result of a baby’s reaction to new products. Baby wipes, detergents, bleach, and fabric softener are all products that can cause rashes.

Even new creams, ointments, oils, and powders can cause rashes if the baby is allergic to them.

6. Use of Antibiotics

Antibiotics’ best feature is that they kill bacteria. However, the problem is that they kill both good and bad bacteria in the body, disrupting the body’s natural functions.

When a child takes antibiotics, the bacteria responsible for controlling yeast growth may be depleted, resulting in diaper rash.

Antibiotic use by mothers of breastfed babies can increase the risk of bacterial diaper rash. Even babies who are given antibiotics, which can cause diarrhoea in some cases, are at risk for diaper rash.

7. Introduction of New Foods

As a baby begins to eat solid food, the contents of his or her stool begin to change. As a result, rashes become more common because the skin isn’t used to certain enzymes or excretions that were previously emitted. And it responds to it in the new setup.

Rashes can also be caused by eating habits and dietary changes in older children. And, if the child’s stool frequency increases as a result of this change, diaper rash may develop.

If a baby develops rashes while being breastfed, it could be a reaction to something the mother has consumed.

Best Treatment For Diaper Rash

Using a baby diaper rash cream is the safest and most practical way to treat diaper rash. Only the best baby diaper rash treatment creams, such as SebaMed baby rash cream or Himalaya diaper rash cream, should be purchased and used.

They’re from one of the most well-known diaper rash creams, and they’re suitable for all skin types. They are both soothing and effective. They have produced excellent results in babies with all skin types.

There are also some home remedies mentioned in the article that must be followed. The diaper cream’s job is to keep the baby’s skin as clean and dry as possible.

Diaper rashes take several days to improve, and rashes return and worsen frequently, so it’s always best to see a doctor.

Diaper rash treatment that can be done on the advice of a paediatrician or dermatologist is the application of mild hydrocortisone cream or antifungal cream.

If prescribed, some topical or oral antibiotics can be used to treat diaper rash.

Antibiotics, on the other hand, should be avoided because they can have serious side effects.

Once you notice diaper rash on your baby, we recommend that you practise good hygiene at home.

The following are some home remedies that you can use to keep your baby comfortable until the diaper rash disappears.

Home Remedies For Diaper Rash In Babies

There are a few diaper rash remedies that you can try at home. The following are some examples:

  • Check and change diapers frequently to keep the diaper area dry and clean.
  • When the diaper area is dry and clean, use baby creams. In this case, petroleum jelly comes in handy. Do not scrub the ointment; simply run it through it gently. Cotton balls can be used later to remove it.
  • Increase the airflow in the diaper area by not tightening the diaper too much to heal the diaper rash. To increase the amount of air exposure, the baby can be kept without a diaper.
  • Diapers of a larger size than usual must be used until the rash subsides, allowing for air passage.
  • Zinc oxide can be an effective diaper rash treatment.
  • Body lotions for babies can be used. Ointments, on the other hand, are a better option because they are less irritating.
  • Baking soda, boric acid, camphor, phenol, benzocaine, diphenhydramine, and salicylates should all be avoided.
  • During the time that the rash is present, the baby must be bathed every day. Use hot water that isn’t too hot, disinfectant, and fragrance-free soaps.
  • Breast milk can be used as an ointment to treat diaper rash. It’s been proven to be both safe and effective.
  • Diaper rash can be treated using Aloe Vera and Calendula.

Precautions To Be Taken

To avoid diaper rash, take the following precautions:

  • Change the Baby’s Diaper Frequently: Changing the wet or pooped diaper with a dry one is critical for preventing diaper rash. The best way to avoid wet diapers is to replace the diaper because wet diapers cause irritation, which leads to rashes.
  • Gently clean the skin while changing diapers: Cleaning is a must while changing diapers. Make use of fragrance-free wipes. Soaps or gentle cleansers should be used.
  • Loosen Up: While the diaper is at work, a small amount of space should be maintained. This aids in the flow of air.
  • Avoid Fragrance: It’s best to stay away from perfumed soaps and scented baby wipes because they can irritate your skin. As much as possible, stay away from alcoholic beverages.
  • Coat The Skin: This is an extremely important and useful technique. Apply a thin layer of petroleum jelly or Zinc oxide to the diaper before putting it on the baby so that urine or stool in the diaper does not come into direct contact with the skin.
  • Change Diaper Brands: While switching diaper brands can cause problems with your friends, if the diaper rash persists, it’s better to switch brands. This tinkering with diaper brands can sometimes yield positive results and cure the problem of diaper rash.
  • Choose Diapers with a High Absorbent Power: It’s important to remember that diapers with a high absorbent power are good for babies. The skin retains its best qualities the better the absorption. Even though there is no scientific evidence to show which diaper is the most absorbent, it can be determined by changing diapers.
  • Use baby powder or talcum powder: To keep the diaper area dry, use talcum powder. The powder can be used to keep the area clean and dry while changing diapers.
  • Pat Wipe the diaper area with a damp cloth rather than scrubbing it.
  • Fabric softener should be avoided.
  • To avoid providing a warm and moist environment in which bacteria breeds, dress babies in less fancy, tight, and breathable fabrics.
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Thaira Banu works as an associate editor and writer for the KidsPoint.com website. She did her B.Tech in Computer Science Engineering from MIT, and has also qualified UGC-NET. Her career as a content writer began in 2019, and she has since developed a wide range of interests. Her knowledge of literature and language has given her an analytical perspective and an eye for detail, which she applies to her articles. Thaira Banu is a product writer for KidsPoint, where she writes about skincare, haircare, beauty, and fashion. She is a voracious reader and writer, as well as an anchor, speaker, and trained dancer who enjoys listening to music, travelling, and binge-watching youtube, Amazon Prime Videos, Netflix shows.